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Special Issue "Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques"

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Urban and Rural Development".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 June 2020) | Viewed by 35521

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. Arnaldo Cecchini
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Architecture, Design and Urban Planning (DADU), University of Sassari, Alghero, Italy
Interests: participation; urban models; walkability; healthy cities; right to the city
Dr. Valentina Talu
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Co-Guest Editor
Department of Architecture, Design and Urban Planning (DADU), University of Sassari, Alghero, Italy
Interests: participatory design; policies for urban re-generation; design for promoting accessibility at various scales

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The Special Issue, entitled “Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques”, aims to investigate the effects of sustainability techniques on the spatial dimension and the management of transformations of space at the urban level.
Particular focus will be put on techniques that can aid in urban planning in the era of the digital revolution and on the use of new technologies not only as tools for the study and interpretation of cities, but also as integral components of the cities themselves.
In this context, sustainability techniques should be simple, user friendly, flexible, and modular in order to be useful for public administrators, decision makers, experts, and citizens. Besides the classical techniques for urban planning, the Special Issue is open for contributions in the following areas:

  • Evaluation tools and decision support systems;
  • Monitoring, alerts, and management control;
  • Support for mitigation and resilience;
  • Communication, information, and citizen participation.

The Special Issue will prioritize contributions that combine theoretical reflections with formal modeling and case studies or proof-of-concept applications.

Prof. Dr. Arnaldo Cecchini
Dr. Valentina Talu
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • urban models
  • sustainable models and techniques
  • decision support systems
  • participation

Published Papers (23 papers)

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Research

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Article
CuRbanIsME: A Photographic Self-Analysis to Evaluate the Likelihood of the Occurrence of Predatory Crimes in Downtown Hamburg
Sustainability 2020, 12(19), 7859; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12197859 - 23 Sep 2020
Viewed by 791
Abstract
In this study, a triangulation of (a) spatial data, (b) self-awareness, and (c) behavioral self-analysis seeks to provide an explanation from an innovative perspective for the likelihood of the occurrence of predatory crimes in the city center. This study does not examine the [...] Read more.
In this study, a triangulation of (a) spatial data, (b) self-awareness, and (c) behavioral self-analysis seeks to provide an explanation from an innovative perspective for the likelihood of the occurrence of predatory crimes in the city center. This study does not examine the circumstances in which criminal acts occur. Instead, it focuses on a broader concept that combines both the configurational factors and the behavioral interconnections in which criminal acts occur. We orient the occurrence probability of crime towards appropriate objectives in the presence or absence of attractors/detractors, with interesting variation in the behavior of the acting subject—in our case, a random walker (also called the Random Movement–displacement Agent, or RDMA, in the text), which is the key variable that triggers the occurrence probability of predatory crimes. The relationship between spatial and/or behavioral observations and the probability of the crimes that may result from such observations is limited in this text to “predatory crimes,” which are the most common and light forms of crimes that endanger both human quality of life and the related safety in the city. Such crimes include theft, damage (specifically crime against public property and all similar offensive acts, such as littering and incivility), physical attacks (restrained to attempted violence against defenseless people), robberies, and car thefts (i.e., the most frequent crimes in urban areas). The theory of complexity, specifically as illustrated by the in-depth work of the 20th century German sociologist Niklas Luhmann, also suggests the importance of self-analysis in specific contexts to construct a mosaic of social phenomena. We conducted both a behavioral self-survey and a metric-based self-analysis by measuring random walks (RWs) to achieve some common behaviors—for example, buying food, shopping, or just looking at shop windows—on the streets of downtown Hamburg, Germany. RWs are used in our article to indicate random walks in the city center and any activities that may arise from them, such as protecting oneself from potentially hostile contexts, seeking information, or conforming oneself to official signals and customs. The hundreds of images taken by us in October 2019 during their RWs in Hamburg form a reservoir of our pictures, with the aim of showing the acceptable patterns of random movements–displacements that emerge. This method was primarily discursive but based on the ongoing search for a transformative conduit of behaviors that were intuitively established and observable for us but actually involved a complex process of imaginative ideation that was impossible to promote and pass on to the reader. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Neighbourhood Park Vitality Potential: From Jane Jacobs’s Theory to Evaluation Model
Sustainability 2020, 12(15), 5881; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12155881 - 22 Jul 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1374
Abstract
We construct a method to evaluate the neighbourhood park vitality potential (NPV-potential), inspired by Jane Jacobs’s theory of urban and park vitality. The evaluation model produces an aggregate score of NPV-potential by combining information on the extrinsic factors of vitality, related to the [...] Read more.
We construct a method to evaluate the neighbourhood park vitality potential (NPV-potential), inspired by Jane Jacobs’s theory of urban and park vitality. The evaluation model produces an aggregate score of NPV-potential by combining information on the extrinsic factors of vitality, related to the park’s surrounding urban area, with evaluative judgements on the intrinsic factors, related to the park’s internal organisation and design. To showcase and submit the evaluation model to a preliminary test drive, we further present the results of an application on three parks in the city of Cagliari, Italy. The computed NPV-potential and the effective use of the three parks, obtained from direct observation, show a good degree of agreement. While far from a robust validation, which would require more extensive empirical studies with larger and more internally variable samples of parks, the reported agreement between the potential and the observed vitality on the ground is a preliminary indication of the possible usefulness of the proposed evaluation method for urban planning and design. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Activity-Based Demand Modeling for a Future Urban District
Sustainability 2020, 12(14), 5821; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12145821 - 20 Jul 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1372
Abstract
Identifying the spatio-temporal patterns of people activities in urban areas is key to effective urban planning; it can be used in real-estate projects to predict their future impacts on behavior in surrounding accessible areas. LaVallée is a large construction project recently started in [...] Read more.
Identifying the spatio-temporal patterns of people activities in urban areas is key to effective urban planning; it can be used in real-estate projects to predict their future impacts on behavior in surrounding accessible areas. LaVallée is a large construction project recently started in Paris’s suburb; it is a new district due in 2024. The paper is in the field of urban planning, aiming at developing a method making it possible to model the potential visits of the various equipment and public spaces of the district, by mobilizing data from census at the departmental level, and the layout of shops and activities as defined by the real-estate project. This model takes into account the flow of external visitors, estimated realistically based on the pre-project movements in the areas of influence of LaVallée. In this paper, we propose an activity-based model methodology to determine trips and their purpose at a mesoscopic scale including the city and surrounding areas, in the current baseline scenario. This travel demand is required to estimate potential external visitors of the future district. A first demonstration shows that the model correctly represents the current demands and allows the forecast of future demand in the area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Applying Comparable Sales Method to the Automated Estimation of Real Estate Prices
Sustainability 2020, 12(14), 5679; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12145679 - 15 Jul 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1222
Abstract
In this paper, we propose a novel procedure designed to apply comparable sales method to the automated price estimation of real estates, in particular, that of apartments. Apartments are the most popular residential housing type in Korea. The price of a single apartment [...] Read more.
In this paper, we propose a novel procedure designed to apply comparable sales method to the automated price estimation of real estates, in particular, that of apartments. Apartments are the most popular residential housing type in Korea. The price of a single apartment is influenced by many factors, making it hard to estimate accurately. Moreover, as an apartment is purchased for living, with a sizable amount of money, it is mostly traded infrequently. Thus, its past transaction price may not be particularly helpful to the estimation after a certain period of time. For these reasons, the up-to-date price of an apartment is commonly estimated by certified appraisers, who typically rely on comparable sales method (CSM). CSM requires comparable properties to be identified and used as references in estimating the current price of the property in question. In this research, we develop a procedure to systematically apply this procedure to the automated estimation of apartment prices and assess its applicability using nine years’ real transaction data from the capital city and the most-populated province in South Korea and multiple scenarios designed to reflect the conditions of low and high fluctuations of housing prices. The results from extensive evaluations show that the proposed approach is superior to the traditional approach of relying on real estate professionals and also to the baseline machine learning approach. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Mapping RRI Dimensions and Sustainability into Regional Development Policies and Urban Planning Instruments
Sustainability 2020, 12(14), 5675; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12145675 - 15 Jul 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 958
Abstract
Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) is an inclusive approach to the research and innovation process. Regional and local authorities are encouraged to take advantages of RRI in order to address the complexity of the interplay between science and society, especially as it affects [...] Read more.
Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI) is an inclusive approach to the research and innovation process. Regional and local authorities are encouraged to take advantages of RRI in order to address the complexity of the interplay between science and society, especially as it affects territorial development policies. However, adopting the RRI approach is not an immediate or linear process. Consciously or not, many territories have already adopted policies and planning instruments that incorporate RRI, generating effects on the spatial scales. The aim of this study is to provide a methodology to map the inclusion of RRI dimensions (i.e., public engagement, open access, gender, ethics, science education) into regional development policies and spatial planning instruments, in order to detect integrated strategies and elements that are sustainable, open, inclusive, anticipative and responsive. The mapping methodology has been applied to three territorial pilot cases. The results provide the territories with a baseline to improve the integration of the RRI approach in their commitments to develop self-sustaining research and innovation ecosystems. Through the lessons learnt from the pilot cases, recommendations are drawn for the integration of RRI in spatial and urban planning policies and tools. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Towards a Revised Framework for Participatory Planning in the Context of Risk
Sustainability 2020, 12(14), 5539; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12145539 - 09 Jul 2020
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1278
Abstract
Community participation is widely acknowledged to be crucial in both mitigation and reconstruction planning, as well as in community-based disaster risk reduction (CBDRR) and community-based disaster mitigation (CBDM) processes. However, despite decades of experience, an efficient framework that is acceptable for all actors [...] Read more.
Community participation is widely acknowledged to be crucial in both mitigation and reconstruction planning, as well as in community-based disaster risk reduction (CBDRR) and community-based disaster mitigation (CBDM) processes. However, despite decades of experience, an efficient framework that is acceptable for all actors and suitable for all different phases of the process—ranging from planning to post-disaster recovery—is lacking. The examples presented in this paper shed light on the different dynamics of participatory design processes and compare situations in which participatory design and community planning were introduced before, during, or after a disastrous or potentially disastrous event. Others emphasize the consequences of participation not being introduced at all. Analysis of these processes allows the authors to speculate on a revised, universal model for participatory planning in vulnerable territories and in the context of risk. By emphasizing intrinsic relations of different elements of the process, particularly the responsibility that different actors are prepared—or forced—to take, this article offers insight towards a framework for post-2020 participatory planning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Exploring Public Opinion on Personal Mobility Vehicle Use: A Case Study in Palermo, Italy
Sustainability 2020, 12(13), 5460; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12135460 - 07 Jul 2020
Cited by 47 | Viewed by 1954
Abstract
The Sustainable Urban Mobility Planning (SUMP) process deals with barriers to improve accessibility and quality of life in urban mobility. Public opinion is highly essential for this process because it presents the real needs of road users. This paper illustrates the influence of [...] Read more.
The Sustainable Urban Mobility Planning (SUMP) process deals with barriers to improve accessibility and quality of life in urban mobility. Public opinion is highly essential for this process because it presents the real needs of road users. This paper illustrates the influence of public opinion on using Private Mobility Vehicle (PMV) in urban. A survey was carried out with 400 participants in Palermo, Italy. The results suggested that there was heterogeneity in gender and age groups in subcategories which represented people who use, do not use, and completely reject, using PMVs in urban. In addition, it was explored that there was a statistically significant relationship at 95% confidence level between sociodemographic characteristics (gender and age groups) and public opinion on PMV using. Employment status was found as an important parameter in transport planning. It was also showed that there was an inconsistency between local and national results. The results suggested that sociodemographic characteristics and public opinion should be investigated in further studies. In addition, a participatory planning process should be carried out to monitor for reliable evaluation in urban transport planning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Land–Sea Interaction: Integrating Climate Adaptation Planning and Maritime Spatial Planning in the North Adriatic Basin
Sustainability 2020, 12(13), 5319; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12135319 - 01 Jul 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2034
Abstract
Land–sea interaction dynamics are physiologically regulated by an exchange of matter (and energy) between the anthropic system and the natural environment. Therefore, the appropriate management of land–sea interaction (LSI)contexts should base on those planning approaches which can holistically support coastal development, such as [...] Read more.
Land–sea interaction dynamics are physiologically regulated by an exchange of matter (and energy) between the anthropic system and the natural environment. Therefore, the appropriate management of land–sea interaction (LSI)contexts should base on those planning approaches which can holistically support coastal development, such as Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) and Climate Adaptation Planning (CAP). One of the main limiting factors for this integration is the fragmentation of existing databases and information sources, which compose the territorial knowledge framework. Investigations have sought to address the representation and assessment of “wicked” and interconnected coastal problems. The present research focuses on the production of the necessary information to fill sectorial knowledge gaps and to merge the available data into a single framework. The research methodology is based on remote sensing assessment techniques and is designed to be replicated in other coastal areas to integrate CAP and MSP. The output maps are a result of the empirical application of the integration of the assessment techniques and are meant to support local decision-making processes. The result aims at illustrating and highlighting the relationships between climate change impact vulnerabilities their spatial relation to marine resources and maritime activities. This can support effective actions aimed at environmental and urban protection, the organization of the uses of the sea and adaptation to climate impacts. The application of the assessment techniques is developed on a case study in the north Adriatic Basin. The Gulf of Trieste constitutes a representative case study for the Mediterranean Basin due to its transboundary nature. The relationship and the ongoing projects between Slovenia and Italy make the case study an interesting context in which to test and train the proposed integrated planning approach. Therefore, the study investigates local vulnerability to climate impacts, i.e., Urban Heat Island (UHI) and urban runoff, and the existing relationship between the urban fabrics and the marine environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Spatial Knowledge: A Potential to Enhance Public Participation?
Sustainability 2020, 12(12), 5025; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12125025 - 19 Jun 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1326
Abstract
Spatial knowledge, i.e., knowledge about space and place, is commonly used by stakeholders during the deliberative process of public participation practice. The goal of this article is to examine to what extent spatial knowledge exists and is used in a formal public participation [...] Read more.
Spatial knowledge, i.e., knowledge about space and place, is commonly used by stakeholders during the deliberative process of public participation practice. The goal of this article is to examine to what extent spatial knowledge exists and is used in a formal public participation practice, as well as its potential to enhance the public participation practice. We used an annual public participation practice in Indonesia called Musrenbang as the case study. Using a three-dimensional framework, we identified the types, levels, and socio-spatial relationships of spatial knowledge used in the Musrenbang practice. Our study finds that villagers had and used spatial knowledge during Musrenbang. However, the knowledge was not properly used due to three main impediments: The stakeholders were not aware of their spatial knowledge, spatial data was not available, which can help to better utilize knowledge while supporting the participatory process, and power gaps among stakeholders. It can be concluded that the development of suitable methods, which can help stakeholders use their spatial knowledge, is needed to enhance the current Musrenbang practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Street Network Resilience Put to the Test: The Dramatic Crash of Genoa and Bologna Bridges
Sustainability 2020, 12(11), 4706; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114706 - 09 Jun 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1190
Abstract
Various hazards and endemic threats are increasingly looming over cities, leading planners to rely on a rich toolbox of flexible and inclusive planning instruments and methods, capable of dealing with unpredicted events or sudden urban contingencies, when seeking sustainable urban futures. While sustainability-oriented [...] Read more.
Various hazards and endemic threats are increasingly looming over cities, leading planners to rely on a rich toolbox of flexible and inclusive planning instruments and methods, capable of dealing with unpredicted events or sudden urban contingencies, when seeking sustainable urban futures. While sustainability-oriented innovative planning approaches are gaining momentum, ways to embed connected concepts in operational planning and design decision support systems have yet to be fully developed and validated. This paper tackles this issue by proposing and testing, in a real-life scenario, a method for the computational analysis of street network resilience, based on Space Syntax theory. The method is suitable to quantify the capacity of urban grids to absorb sudden disturbances and adapt to change, and to offer support for mitigation decisions and their communication to the public. It presents a set of configurational resilience indices, whose reliability is qualitatively assessed considering the ex-ante and ex-post urban configurations generated by two exceptional and dramatic bridge crashes. These events occurred almost simultaneously in two Italian cities with peculiarly similar characteristics. The results confirm the value of the proposal and highlight urban form, and particularly its grid, as a key driver in building urban resilience, together with the self-organisation capacity of local communities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Construction of a Composite Vulnerability Index to Map Peripheralization Risk in Urban and Metropolitan Areas
Sustainability 2020, 12(11), 4641; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114641 - 05 Jun 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 1782
Abstract
As cities and poverty continue to grow worldwide, both spatial and a-spatial peripheralization processes expose entire urban and metropolitan areas at risk of degradation, not just traditional peripheries. The main aim of this paper is to propose a methodology for peripheralization risk assessment, [...] Read more.
As cities and poverty continue to grow worldwide, both spatial and a-spatial peripheralization processes expose entire urban and metropolitan areas at risk of degradation, not just traditional peripheries. The main aim of this paper is to propose a methodology for peripheralization risk assessment, according to the general theory of territorial risk, in order to identify priority areas where mitigation actions should be envisaged through urban and territorial planning. Such an approach constitutes the novelty of the work. So, peripheralization risk is defined for the first time, depending on aggregated vulnerability and exposure. Based on a literature review, a set of vulnerability indicators structured in three dimensions is defined in order to construct the composite vulnerability index in the Italian geographical context. Due to the absence of well-established threshold values, an aggregation method based on fuzzy logic is used. The methodology was applied to a conurbation of 16 municipalities in Campania Region (Italy). Obtained results showed that areas most at risk can be both peripheral and central neighborhoods, but also entire municipalities, demonstrating how mitigation actions are needed at different planning levels. Since the necessary input data are ordinarily available in planning processes, the proposed methodology can be transferred to other geographical contexts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Agent-Based Analysis of Urban Spaces Using Space Syntax and Spatial Cognition Approaches: A Case Study in Bari, Italy
Sustainability 2020, 12(11), 4625; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114625 - 05 Jun 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1491
Abstract
The present study provides a reflection on the agent-based intelligence of urban spatial environments through the comparison of a formal quantitative approach, i.e., space syntax, and a qualitative experimentation based on the spatial cognition approach. Until recently, space syntax was adopted by urban [...] Read more.
The present study provides a reflection on the agent-based intelligence of urban spatial environments through the comparison of a formal quantitative approach, i.e., space syntax, and a qualitative experimentation based on the spatial cognition approach. Until recently, space syntax was adopted by urban planners and designers to support urban design and planning decisions, based on an analysis of the urban physical environment. Researchers in the cognitive science field have increased their attempts to address space syntax techniques to better understand the relationships of cognitive spatial agents with the spatial features of urban environments. In this context, the experimental approach focuses on the qualities of the environment as interacted, perceived and interpreted by cognitive agents and reflects on the role which it plays in affecting spatial decisions and route choices. The present paper aimed to explore the extent to which possible integration between the different approaches can provide insights on agent-based decisions in actions and behavioural processes in space for useful perspectives in urban analysis and planning. Findings suggest relevant correlations between the experimentation results and space syntax predictions when a correspondence of some aspects can be found. Conversely, interesting qualitative insights from the spatial cognition approach are pointed out to enrich the configurational analysis. The potential and constraints of each approach and the ways of combining these are presented. Evidence supports the suitability of the proposal outlined in the present paper within the framework of urban planning practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Social Housing as an Experimental Approach to the Sustainable Regeneration of Historic City Centers: An Ongoing Study of Sassari City, Italy
Sustainability 2020, 12(11), 4579; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114579 - 04 Jun 2020
Viewed by 1124
Abstract
The urban development in the 21st century builds upon sustainable urban redevelopment. In this paper, we use urban regeneration as a strategic intervention that reverses social and physical decline through an integrated approach. We argued that social housing is an important strategic intervention [...] Read more.
The urban development in the 21st century builds upon sustainable urban redevelopment. In this paper, we use urban regeneration as a strategic intervention that reverses social and physical decline through an integrated approach. We argued that social housing is an important strategic intervention of urban regeneration. Unlike many European countries, social housing in Italy has remained an experimental field that urgently needs new models, and urban planning tools and techniques. We presented guidelines for an experimental social housing model. We focus on abandoned buildings and spaces, social issues, and services, with the goal of contributing to urban welfare in the old town center of Sassari City. This approach goes well beyond efforts to put uninhabited or degraded land and buildings to new uses. A model is an integrated tool that is capable of triggering and guiding the processes of social innovation, inclusion, cultural promotion, and economic development. It grounds on the collaborative use of spaces that stimulate a new culture of living together: collaborative living. This paper is based on the results of an ongoing research project, which involves the local University and the Municipality. More research is needed to enclose the model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Does High-Speed Rail Influence Urban Dynamics and Land Pricing?
Sustainability 2020, 12(7), 3012; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12073012 - 09 Apr 2020
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 2115
Abstract
At present, many countries around the world have significantly invested in sustainable transportation systems, especially for high-speed rail (HSR) infrastructures, since they are believed to improve economies, and regenerate regional and business growth. In this study, we focus on economic growth, dynamic land [...] Read more.
At present, many countries around the world have significantly invested in sustainable transportation systems, especially for high-speed rail (HSR) infrastructures, since they are believed to improve economies, and regenerate regional and business growth. In this study, we focus on economic growth, dynamic land use, and urban mobility. The emphasis is placed on testing a hypothesis about whether HSRs can enable socio-economic development. Real case studies using big data from large cities in China, namely Shanghai province and Minhang districts, are taken into account. Socio-technical information such as employment rate, property pricing, and agglomeration in the country’s economy is collected from the China Statistics Bureau and the China Academy of Railway Sciences for analyses. This research aims to re-examine practical factors resulting from HSR’s impact on urban areas by using ANOVA analysis and dummy variable regression to analyse urban dynamics and property pricing. In addition, this study enhances the prediction outcomes that lead to urban planning strategies for the business area. The results reveal that there are various effects (i.e., regional accessibility, city development plans, and so on) required to enable the success of HSR infrastructure in order to enrich urban dynamics and land pricing. This paper also highlights critical perspectives towards sustainability, which are vital to social and economic impacts. In addition, this study provides crucial perspectives on sustainable developments for future HSR projects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
A User-Based Look at Visualization Tools for Environmental Data and Suggestions for Improvement—An Inventory among City Planners in Gothenburg
Sustainability 2020, 12(7), 2882; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12072882 - 04 Apr 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1147
Abstract
With a growing interest in environmental data and the need to consider various environmental factors earlier in the planning processes, it becomes more important to disseminate this type of information to different target groups in a comprehensible way. To support easier decision making, [...] Read more.
With a growing interest in environmental data and the need to consider various environmental factors earlier in the planning processes, it becomes more important to disseminate this type of information to different target groups in a comprehensible way. To support easier decision making, many cities and municipalities are increasingly using digital city models where it is possible to integrate different types of information based on simulation and visualization of future scenarios. Such tools have high potential, but the visual representation of data still needs to be developed. In this paper, we investigate how professionals within urban planning currently use visualization to communicate environmental data, and what their needs are regarding tools and visual representation. We discuss challenges for representing environmental data in urban development processes, with the aim of contributing to a better understanding of these issues. We base our investigation on a literature study, an inventorying survey and a focus group discussion with professionals within urban planning. This study provides an end-user perspective among urban planners and valuable insights on tool usage and visualization. Results show that applications used for environmental visualization still can be improved regarding, e.g., user friendliness and information handling, which may increase their efficiency. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
How Sustainable Are Land Use Tools? A Europe-Wide Typological Investigation
Sustainability 2020, 12(3), 1257; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12031257 - 10 Feb 2020
Cited by 20 | Viewed by 2767
Abstract
Sustainable land use depends on both the socio-economic processes that trigger spatial development and the effectiveness of spatial governance tools that aim to regulate these processes. The ESPON Sustainable Urbanization and land-use Practices in European Regions (SUPER) research project aims to analyze the [...] Read more.
Sustainable land use depends on both the socio-economic processes that trigger spatial development and the effectiveness of spatial governance tools that aim to regulate these processes. The ESPON Sustainable Urbanization and land-use Practices in European Regions (SUPER) research project aims to analyze the main land-use dynamics in Europe, looking at and comparing the interventions implemented in the various countries in order to promote sustainability. In particular, a sample of 227 interventions was chosen from a total of 39 European countries. This paper analyzes them on the basis of four different variables: (i) the scale at which the interventions are conceived; (ii) the type of territories subject to them; (iii) the type of interventions; (iv) the type of instruments behind these interventions. On this basis, it develops a number of considerations concerning the effectiveness of the interventions implemented in Europe to promote more sustainable use of land. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
The Novel Paradigm of Economics Driven for Local Smart Sustain Cities Modeling Using Exploratory Factor Analysis and Planning Technique Using Fuzzy Evaluation Decision Making
Sustainability 2020, 12(3), 793; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12030793 - 21 Jan 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1056
Abstract
The Smart Cities (SCs) models currently widely employed are identical and inconsiderate of Economics Driven (ED), Local Context (LC), and Sustainability (St) factors. These are key factors to driving, constructing, and developing smart cities. This paper presents a process wherein “the Local Smart [...] Read more.
The Smart Cities (SCs) models currently widely employed are identical and inconsiderate of Economics Driven (ED), Local Context (LC), and Sustainability (St) factors. These are key factors to driving, constructing, and developing smart cities. This paper presents a process wherein “the Local Smart Sustain Cities Model (LSSCsM)” is combined and modeled with Exploratory Factor Analysis technique (EFA) to design a smart city that fits the local features of a given area. This particular process creates a Smart Cities Model (SCsM) that has unique sustainability and local context factors. This paper also presents the smart cities Priority Action Ranking (PAR) process using Fuzzy Logic Decision Making (FLDM) to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each smart city economics driver and characteristic and prioritize the direction planning of each factor and characteristic. The resulting smart cities model can then be used as the foundation of sustainable smart cities that avoid the pitfall of using incompatible smart cities models as the base and consequently failing, thus avoiding the extravagant costs associated with an unsuccessful project of such scale. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Sustainable Urban Planning Technique of Fire Disaster Prevention for Subway
Sustainability 2020, 12(1), 372; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12010372 - 02 Jan 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1173
Abstract
Subway infrastructure is a representative urban infrastructure for sustainable urban development as part of its policy to harmonize with economic growth. As the transportation infrastructure of large cities develops with high speed and intelligence, more attention will be paid to its safety. The [...] Read more.
Subway infrastructure is a representative urban infrastructure for sustainable urban development as part of its policy to harmonize with economic growth. As the transportation infrastructure of large cities develops with high speed and intelligence, more attention will be paid to its safety. The main cause of death in subway fires is asphyxiation, due to the closed specificity of the underground space. Therefore, smoke exhaust facilities should be capable of minimizing the effects of smoke to ensure the safe evacuation of passengers in the event of fire. In this study, three kinds of fire locations are adopted to analyze the distribution of platform temperature, CO, and visibility in connection with the smoke exhaust system operation method. We evaluate the performance of the applicable smoke exhaust system from ASET-based untenable area analysis. Fatality evaluation by escape analysis according to the smoke exhaust system estimates the fatality based on the tenability performance evaluation. Moreover, the FED method was used to evaluate tenability performance. Therefore, the result of this study suggests a solution for sustainable subway Disaster response from the performance evaluation of the subway platform smoke exhaust system for safe evacuation of passengers, which is essential for subway construction or remodeling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Geodesign Process Analytics: Focus on Design as a Process and Its Outcomes
Sustainability 2020, 12(1), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12010119 - 22 Dec 2019
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1167
Abstract
This paper argues that the opportunities offered by currently available collaborative Planning Support Systems (PSS) are useful not only for applying a systems approach and coordinating actors in the planning process, but also for tracking the evolution of design alternatives toward a final [...] Read more.
This paper argues that the opportunities offered by currently available collaborative Planning Support Systems (PSS) are useful not only for applying a systems approach and coordinating actors in the planning process, but also for tracking the evolution of design alternatives toward a final plan. The availability of process log-data in the latest PSS opens new paths for understanding (geo)design dynamics. With the aim of taking full advantage of this new data source, a novel Geodesign Process Analytics is described in detail from log-data extraction and pre-processing methods and tools to the development of the set of spatial, performance, temporal and design evolution indicators. The study also demonstrates how the proposed measures are appropriate for display in a dynamic dashboard, making available a real-time process analysis tool to the team coordinators, thus supporting their leading role in facilitating the geodesign process. The research assumptions were tested using the Geodesignhub PSS and data from a geodesign study developed within the International Geodesign Collaboration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Smart Techniques in Urban Planning: An Insight to Ruled-Based Design
Sustainability 2020, 12(1), 114; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12010114 - 22 Dec 2019
Viewed by 1792
Abstract
In the last decades, the ideology of managing the city form and performance through pre-determined plans has gradually lost its validity. Some contemporary urban planning theories suggest the application of smart design techniques for managing urban complexity. However, the proposed approach has partially [...] Read more.
In the last decades, the ideology of managing the city form and performance through pre-determined plans has gradually lost its validity. Some contemporary urban planning theories suggest the application of smart design techniques for managing urban complexity. However, the proposed approach has partially been experienced in practice, and more research on how to integrate them into urban planning is needed. This study aims to present an insight into the rule-based design as a smart design technique for a shift from pre-determined urban plans to design rules. The methodology is based on a comparative analysis between the experiments of some cases in the north of Europe. Research findings highlight that the capacity to deliver variety with harmony, the distinction between the roles of code writer and building designer, the potential to support the implementation process and to prescribe specific qualities, both for the spatial and organizational purposes, are significant factors for the integration of smart design techniques to urban planning. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Article
Identifying Spatial Patterns of Retail Stores in Road Network Structure
Sustainability 2019, 11(17), 4539; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11174539 - 21 Aug 2019
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 1857
Abstract
Understanding the spatial patterns of retail stores in urban areas contributes to effective urban planning and business administration. A variety of methods have been proposed in the scientific literature to identify the spatial patterns of retail stores. These methods invariably employ arbitrary grid [...] Read more.
Understanding the spatial patterns of retail stores in urban areas contributes to effective urban planning and business administration. A variety of methods have been proposed in the scientific literature to identify the spatial patterns of retail stores. These methods invariably employ arbitrary grid cells or administrative units (e.g., census tracts) as the fundamental analysis units. As most urban retail stores are distributed along street networks, using area-based analysis units is subject to statistical biases and may obfuscate the spatial pattern to some extent. Using the street segment as the analysis unit, this paper derives the spatial patterns of retail stores by crawling points of interest (POI) data in Zhengzhou, a city in central China. Then, the paper performs the network-based kernel density estimation (NKDE) and employs several network metrics, including the global, local, and weighted closeness centrality. Additionally, the paper discusses the correlation between the NKDE value and the closeness centrality across different store types. Further analysis indicates that stores with a high correlation tend to be distributed in city centers and subnetwork centers. The comparison between NKDE and cell-based KDE shows that our proposed method can address potential statistical issues induced by the area-based unit analysis. Our finding can help stakeholders better understand the spatial patterns and trends of small business expansion in urban areas and provide strategies for sustainable planning and development. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Review

Jump to: Research

Review
Resilience Thinking as a System Approach to Promote China’s Sustainability Transitions
Sustainability 2020, 12(12), 5008; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12125008 - 18 Jun 2020
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 1575
Abstract
Urban regeneration and rural revitalization are becoming major policy initiatives in China, which requires new approaches for sustainability transitions. This paper reviewed the history of policy reforms and institutional changes and analysed the main challenges to sustainability transitions in China. The urban-rural systems [...] Read more.
Urban regeneration and rural revitalization are becoming major policy initiatives in China, which requires new approaches for sustainability transitions. This paper reviewed the history of policy reforms and institutional changes and analysed the main challenges to sustainability transitions in China. The urban-rural systems were defined as a complex dynamic social-ecological system based on resilience thinking and transition theory. The notions of adaptation and transformation were applied to compose a framework to coordinate “resilience” with “sustainability”. The findings indicate that China’s urbanization has experienced the conservative development of restructuring socio-economic and political systems (before 1984), the fast industrialization and economic development leaned to cities (1984 to 2002), the rapid urbanization led by land expropriation and investment expansion (2002 to 2012), and the quality development transformation equally in urban and rural areas (since 2012). The sustainability transitions have been challenged by controversial institutional arrangements, concerning population mobility control, unequal social welfare, and incomplete property rights. A series of policy interventions should be designed and implemented accordingly with joint efforts of multiple stakeholders and based on the combined technocratic and bottom-up knowledge derived from proactive and conscious individuals and collectives through context-dependent social networks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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Review
Planning and Design Support Tools for Walkability: A Guide for Urban Analysts
Sustainability 2020, 12(11), 4405; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12114405 - 28 May 2020
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 1896
Abstract
We present a survey of operational methods for walkability analysis and evaluation, which we hold show promise as decision-support tools for sustainability-oriented planning and urban design. An initial overview of the literature revealed a subdivision of walkability studies into three main lines of [...] Read more.
We present a survey of operational methods for walkability analysis and evaluation, which we hold show promise as decision-support tools for sustainability-oriented planning and urban design. An initial overview of the literature revealed a subdivision of walkability studies into three main lines of research: transport and land use, urban health, and livable cities. A further selection of articles from the Scopus and Web of Science databases focused on scientific papers that deal with walkability evaluation methods and their suitability as planning and decision-support tools. This led to the definition of a taxonomy to systematize and compare the methods with regard to factors of walkability, scale of analysis, attention on profiling, aggregation methods, spatialization and sources of data used for calibration and validation. The proposed systematization aspires to offer to non-specialist but competent urban analysts a guide and an orienteering, to help them integrate walkability analysis and evaluation into their research and practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Urban Planning Techniques)
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